Prom is one of the most memorable nights of a student’s high school career. One of the most important factors that make prom so special is the music.
Every year, the Junior class officers take the time to plan prom; but this year the prom was handed off to the Associated Student Body (ASB) to organize.
Recognizing that the majority of the juniors and seniors at the school are Hispanic or Latino, many seniors thought it would be a great idea to have a banda play at prom. Banda is a genre of Mexican music in which a musical ensemble includes mostly brass and percussion.
Seniors proposed that the banda would only be at prom partially, and the DJ would play for the rest of the night.
The price of the banda would not influence ticket prices as all of the funding for the live music would come from money raised by student-led organizations such as League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC). Seniors even coordinated with the DJ and the venue to make sure that they were okay with live music being performed.
Both the DJ and the banda would be able to play music throughout the night, the cost of tickets would not be too expensive for students to perform, and both the DJ and the venue were okay with live music being performed for an hour or so.
Even so, juniors gave much backlash to the senior class marking their disapproval of the banda. Many stated that it was “non-inclusive” and did not go with the theme of prom which is “Tuscan Sunset.”
Parents even came into the school to complain, and students were about to stage a protest, this matter went back and forth with the administration for days.
Seniors even began a petition for a banda which gained numerous signatures; which the administration refused to even consider.
The debacle of the banda started a movement which had brought many students together to voice their opinions and fight to make prom a more personal experience. Though many students showed their support by signing a petition, other students had stepped up to have direct conversations with the administration.
Finally, a compromise was reached that included the senior class curating a playlist of Hispanic or Latino songs which the DJ must play; but many still argue that it is not the same as when it is performed live.
One student who is a part of ASB, Briseida Martinez said, “Figuring out the predicament at prom was just stressful and chaotic. In the end, I’m glad we were able to come to a compromise and achieve a happy medium.
“This event just highlights the real process of change within our school’s culture,” Martinez said, “and will hopefully make things easier for everyone in the future. “We are striving to be an all-inclusive, all-accepting school, Martinez added. “Although it may not be easy at first, the hearts of our students will definitely lead us all to better opportunities and events in the future.”